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SIL asked DH and I to cater wedding reception - Need help

SIL asked DH and I to do the food for her wedding. To me, its beyond rude, but the whole scenario around it is better suited for another board Super Angry This is a... casual wedding I guess. Its going to be @ the local hall. Here is the thing... we live 1.5  hours away, and we really don't want to spend all day preparing and transporting food. The caveat to this is there is NO cooking equiptment available for us to use. I am SO lost as to what to bring. I know much of this is her choice, but she probably doesn't understand what a big undertaking this will be.

So far in mind we have the following ideas (keep in mind this is casual)

Veggie Tray

Fruit Tray

Sweet and Sour Meatballs

Bruschetta

Stuffed mini bell peppers (I found them in The Way To His Heart's blog)

And the rest, I just can't come up with. She expects about 60 people. Its a Saturday evening wedding, and I just can't get my head around not having a full dinner, but this is what she wants. This reception is in a rural area at 8pm so not a lot of local option for items from restaurants.

Any ideas? Its going to have to be things we can prepare and serve without anything besides an electric skillet and crockpots.

Re: SIL asked DH and I to cater wedding reception - Need help

  • FWIW, DH is a restaurant manager so we are extremely cognizant of food safety, which also makes us hypersensitive to the preparation and storage of the food.

    Were talking food needing refrigeration is going to be in a cooler on ice.... no fridge

  • Caprese bites, veggies in tall straight shot glasses with dressing in the bottom and thin slices of veggies comming out. 

    Also, she needs to ask other family members to bring something, this is way too much for two people.

  • This was the case at DH's niece's wedding.  Well, there was equipment but they told them at the last minute that they couldn't use it bc of insurance reasons. They had sub platters from BJ's (like costco and sams) and soup.  The soup you could totally make ahead (even way ahead and freeze if you have space) and warm in a big crockpot or roaster.  They had chips, pretzels, and cookies.  They also had a big table with cheese cubes, crackers, and some fresh fruit. 
  • image LisiLynn:

    Caprese bites, veggies in tall straight shot glasses with dressing in the bottom and thin slices of veggies comming out. 

    Also, she needs to ask other family members to bring something, this is way too much for two people.

    I think these look really nice but prepping individual appetizers like this are a b!tch.  If she wants veggies, do a huge veggie platter which is open bag, dump contents out onto tray - carrots, tomatoes, broccoli.  Maybe cut up some pepper and celery.  

  • considering the logistics i'd probably decline.
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  • kmmssgkmmssg member
    Tenth Anniversary 100 Comments Combo Breaker
    That is a pretty outrageous request in my opinion.  In all honesty, I would decline and just attend as guests.  If they can't afford to hire a caterer maybe they need to rethink their wedding plans.
  • I went to a wedding recently that was catered by the groom's family, and the casual food was really good.  I don't know if this is what the bride has in mind, but I think barbecue would work really well.  Big batches of pulled pork in the crockpot, rolls, slaw (you could pull some tricks to keep this cold enough), beans.  Easy, tasty, fairly cheap.  Totally messy for someone wearing a big white dress, but whatever.
  • image kmmssg:
    That is a pretty outrageous request in my opinion.  In all honesty, I would decline and just attend as guests.  If they can't afford to hire a caterer maybe they need to rethink their wedding plans.

    I was going to say the same thing.

    I know you're asking for help with food options but I honestly don't think this is a good idea given the circumstances. Are they going to pay you for the food or are you expected to provide it all free of charge?

     

  • I recently went to a wedding where they catered Potbellys.  They had 3 or 4 different sandwiches to choose from, small containers of pasta salad/cole slaw, bins of chips and bins of cookies.  Potbellys sent 2 employees to man the buffet area and it worked out well.  It was a later reception as well.  The couple was on a very tight budget so I imagine it wasnt really expensive.  And to be honest, I thought it was great because I would rather have had a sandwich I liked than some gross, cold chicken/veggie platter. 

    I would look into that kind of option or like pp mentioned, do BBQ pulled something.  That can be pre-made and served in crock pots/warming trays.  Add the buns, veggie platter and maybe 1 huge bowl of pasta salad and call it a day.

    Or order pizzas and have them delivered.  Maybe a little tacky but at this point, who cares.  I find it unbelievable they are requesting this of you instead of catering from a restaurant/caterer. 

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  • Wow...just wow.  

    What are things that reheat well?  Soups, chili, stews and macaroni and cheese come to mine.   I had a fancy ballroom wedding that served vegetable soup shooters (sweet potato, gingered carrot and chipotle-pumpkin) and mac & cheese spoons topped with fresh lobster.  

    What cold snack things do people like?  Pickles, Olives, nuts, fruit tray (got that), vege tray (got that), chips and salsa (commercial since there is no fridge).  Loaves of bread,  Crackers for the soups 

    Good luck

    And wow. 

     

  • I just had a thought...

    Why don't you hire a caterer or bring in food like the other ladies suggested and stick the bill in their card in lieu of a check (assuming SIL wasn't planning to give you money for the food). 

  • Can you grill?

    I

  • I would make part of the menu a cheese board, so lots of different cheeses and different accompaniments such as breads, crackers, fresh fruit, mustard, chutneys, dried fruits, olives, nuts...that in itself can be a very fancy/beautiful display

  • maybe she thought you'd feel honored?  but you are related to the bride - I would think you'd be better as guests than as catering staff.

    Has she provided any direction with regard to what she is thinking?  8pm wedding - hopefully all she's looking at are snack type apps and not a full meal?  I would have eaten dinner before the ceremony.

    do you have chafing dishes? that you could keep hot things hot in?  what about shrimp wrapped in bacon? or shrimp cocktail? chicken skewers with a dipping sauce?  (we buy ours from costco for parties)

    antipasta platter - cheeses, olives, cured meats? 

  • hmmmm....I agree with the idea of looking into Potbelly's, Qdoba, pizza, subs...or similar.   Or maybe not as ALL the food, but to help you out a bit.  Do you go to a Costco, Sam's, BJs, or even a grocery store.  I have gotten 'party' food from Costco and grocery store such as veggie trays, large portions of various salads, sandwich trays......

    Funny but, our friends get fried chicken for their son's b-day party every year...with the runny mashed potatoes, coleslaw, biscuits,etc (it is what she was craving the night before her son was born.....which is why it is funny.....because they totally don't eat food like that!) anyway....  Would your SIL like that?  ;) 

    To add to your ideas:

    mini sliders, chicken salad sandwiches, other little 'tea' sandwiches.   I also think the BBQ pork is a good idea....or other meat sliced and hot in a crockpot for mini sandwiches....ham maybe. 

    fruit skewers would be a little fancier....and more finger food friendly, but more work. 

    various dips/chips,  popcorn, nuts

    Is she wanting dessert from you too? 

    If any guests are like me....I would eat before hand and not really eat much that late.  :)

    [IMG]http://i51.tinypic.com/2s7w16v.jpg[/IMG]
  • image thehomecook:

    I just had a thought...

    Why don't you hire a caterer or bring in food like the other ladies suggested and stick the bill in their card in lieu of a check (assuming SIL wasn't planning to give you money for the food). 

     

    I like this idea.

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  • I don't feel honored at all. In fact, I find it insulting. Jeff is her brother. We live the furthest away from the wedding, and we have the youngest children. Plus, he works 55 hours a week preparing food and running a restaurant. I feel though we are family AND wedding guests, and we should be treated as such. I draw the line at grilling out. Her wedding is the first weekend in July, and I'll be damned if I am going to slave over a grill. This is a total imposition. But without my consent, Jeff told her he would do it. He did not volunteer. And yes, I am miffed that he did not consult me. Again, another issue. The way I see it, she is basically going to have to go with what is easy and feasible for us. If she doesn't like it, by all means, shell out a few bucks and call a caterer. There are not many local restaurants for Potbelly sandwiches, pizza, etc.

    I do like the idea of a pulled pork, and maybe do an italian beef. Potato salad, slaw, etc for sides.

    The other flip side is we have to clean up too. So I want little mess. ANd yes, she will be paying. No upfront money, no food.

  • I would probably just get everything from Costco or something - you guys are busy enough as is and I don't think she's in any place to demand what food you bring.
  • I had pulled pork in roasters, bags of chips and chip dip, cole slaw/potato salad.  You can keep the pulled pork warm during the wedding.  We did meat and cheese and vegetable trays for my sisters and it was alot of work.  I decided on this because it was easier setup/cleanup instead of having to worry about setting up nice trays.  We had buffet style.
  • i would suggest pulled pork. is there a local butcher that might have it prepared? a lot of places in rural areas that sell it prepared, you just need to warm it up. maybe there is a pork producers group or a cattlemens group that woulr offer that service for cheap? 

     

    what about the cheesy hashbrowns in a crockpot? then your veggie tray and fruit tray and a coleslaw or macaroni salad. that seems pretty standard at weddings here.  

    [IMG]http://i45.tinypic.com/2czvlhx.jpg[/IMG]
  • If it were me, I would decline. That's too much.
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    image
  • image Passanie:
    If it were me, I would decline. That's too much.

    This is me too!  

    Image and video hosting by TinyPicMy food blog: Blissfully Delicious BabyFruit Ticker
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